Was Jesus an Angel?
Some churches teach that Jesus was an angel—a created being. However, the truth of Scripture reveals something far greater.
If we do not know Jesus, then we do not know His Father. As Jesus spoke to the religious leaders of His day, He made it abundantly clear that “if you had known Me, you would have known My Father also” (verse 7).
As Christians, we must ensure that we have a correct knowledge of the Father and His Son, Jesus Christ. Many religious books have been published that provide detailed information about Jesus, broaching the subject of His life, His historical context, His impact on society and, yes, His divinity. But they don’t all agree, however, so we have to seek a more authoritative source.
Though most Christians today believe that Jesus, the Son of God, ascended as a spirit being to sit at the right hand of His Father, some question His divinity. Some denominations even conclude that Jesus is more “angel” than He is “God,” but this conclusion does not resonate with the tenor of the entire Bible. In the end, it comes down to one thought:
Either Jesus is part of God’s creation, or He eternally existed and is God.
The book of Hebrews distinguishes Jesus from angels
Several verses in the book of Hebrews help provide tremendous understanding of this situation.
“Of the angels he [God] says, ‘He makes his angels winds, and his ministers a flame of fire.’
“But of the Son he says, ‘Your throne, O God, is forever and ever’” (Hebrews 1:7-8, English Standard Version).
Either Jesus is part of God’s creation, or He eternally existed and is God.Following the flow of logic through these two verses provides insight. We see specifics of angels introduced in verse 7. Initially, we see the metaphor between angels and “winds,” expressing a force that acts in an unseen manner upon its surroundings. As the author transitions into verse 8, he uses the short, yet impactful word “but,” shifting focus from angels to specific concepts concerning Jesus Christ.
This contrast between verses 7 and 8 lets us place those verses side by side and notice clear and purposeful differences. As we will see, these differences concern the distinction between angels and the Son of God, Jesus the Messiah. While the supernatural presence of angels is indeed impressive, the follow-up verse shows specific attributes of the Son that cannot apply to the angels.
Jesus is called God
Moving into the verses specific to Jesus Christ the Son, the author of Hebrews wrote that God the Father says something noteworthy to the Son: “Your throne, O God, is forever and ever.”
Here we see God the Father referring to the Son as “God.”
This is a monumental statement, for by calling the Son “God,” there is a recognition of divinity that was not attributed to the angels in the previous verse.
The Word in the Gospel of John
Further developing this thought, we should consider the introduction to the Gospel of John. This book opens with the statement, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God” (John 1:1). This describes the relationship between two spirit beings, both referred to as God.
We get a glimpse at how far back this ancient relationship stretches, for the wording is meant to refer to a time long before the establishment of the universe. It points back to the first verse in the Bible, “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth” (Genesis 1:1).
Though some denominations blur the lines between Jesus Christ and the angels, the distinction is unmistakable. Some identify Jesus Christ as the archangel Michael or another angel. However, this idea of the Son of God existing as an angel, or even an archangel, is impossible to harmonize with the content of Hebrews 1:7-8 and John 1.
So, by understanding who Jesus Christ was (and what He wasn’t), we find ourselves closer to an understanding of both the Father and the Son.
Learn more in our related article “Was Jesus Created?”